One way to keep a national football team excelling over decades is the ability to inject fresh legs into the team.
That is why having a well-oiled machine of grooming new talents from grassroots sports is very essential.
Ghana has had a long history of doing this very well when it comes to football. From school competitions to community clubs and various divisions of national competitions and finally to national teams. Helping to keep this machinery grinding year after year and generations after generations are the numerous scouts both at home and from abroad who spot talent and give them opportunities to shine.
That is the story of a lot of our Ghanaian football icons including new entry, Felix Afena Ohene-Gyan and our legend, Asamoah Gyan.
The two have a different yet similar football story and it goes beyond the fact that they are both called Gyan although, Felix’s is a compound name.
Over the weekend, when Felix Ohene-Gyan came from the bench and scored two goals for his new club AS Roma, he quickly became the darling of the world of football.
The 18-year-old was introduced into the game against Genoa by Jose Mourinho with 15 minutes to go as the game was deadlocked.
With less than 10 minutes remaining, Ohene-Gyan finally had his chance and side-footed a low-grounded effort into the bottom corner to give Roma a lead.
Incidentally, that goal meant the striker becomes the first player born after 1/1/2003 to have scored a goal in Serie A. It didn’t take long for him to add another goal.
His goal also meant he got to take on Jose Mourinho on his offer to buy him an €800 (GHS 5.5K) boots.
Felix’s dramatic win got people reliving the amazing career of Asamoah Gyan who rose through the ranks to become the captain of the Ghana Black Stars.
The nostalgia people are feeling is not unwarranted. There are some similarities in there.
What’s In The Home Region?
Both players call the Bono Region home with Felix actually calling Sunyani his place of birth.
What’s In The Name?
It doesn’t take much to recognise the fact that the two players share the same surname as mentioned earlier.
What’s In The Career?
The two players were both young talents who developed their careers from the grassroots and inter schools football. Though Felix completed Brekum Presec in 2019 Asamoah Gyan was also a teenager when he started his professional football career with Dansoman based Liberty Professionals.
What’s With Italy?
Both players had their first international club football break in Italy. While Asamoah Gyan was snaped up by Udinese, Felix as we know now was signed by AS Roma thanks to their partnership with EurAfrica FC.
What’s In The Position?
Both players are quick attackers who can play in different attacking (striking) positions.
It is very refreshing for Ghanaian football lovers that we have young talents who can be groomed to join the national team. Felix is already known to the Ghana Black Stars technical team as he was called to join the team on November 4 ahead of the recent Ethiopia and South Africa games. Felix only turned the call up down because he believed he was not ready for an international assignment yet.
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